Best Time To Go For A Walk

Have you ever wondered is there a “right” time of the day to go for a walk? On the surface research on the topic revealed discussions on temperature levels, volumes, lung function, each pointed to the evening time. However……

As you dig a little deeper other research concluded that the morning was a better time to go for a walk. It helps you boost your metabolism for the day and more importantly it’s easier to find time to do this exercise every day.

To be honest I found pros and cons attached to all times of the day and it prompted me to write this article. Because of my hectic schedule, trying to juggle being a full-time mum, wife, daughter, sister, and business person. I have found my love of walking slowly being pushed to the side as other parts of my life took priority, I now walk whenever I can find the time.

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Why you should go for a walk in the evening?

If you considering scheduling your exercise for the evenings here are some of the pros and cons of deciding to go for a walk at this time of the day.

Pros of walking in the evening

  • Exercising in the evening helps reduce nighttime food cravings.
  • Going for a walk after your dinner is an excellent time for family and friends to connect.
  • Your muscles are more flexible and warm and it reduces the probability of injury.

Cons of walking in the evening

  • The single biggest con of walking in the evening has to be safety. if you’re deciding to go for a walk to improve your health, you want to know that you can do so safely. 
  • After a workout, it’s important to allow your body time to cool down before you need to sleep.
  • The evening often comes with many other distractions which makes getting a consistent workout schedule difficult for many people

Why you should go for a walk in the late afternoon?

If you’re lucky enough to have a regular block of time available in the late afternoon here are some of the major reasons why it’s a good time to go for a walk.

Pros of walking in the afternoon

  • There’s a full body of research published in 2011 that points to the best time for exercising to be between 3:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. as it allows you to perform to your best and enables your body to build muscle.
  • If you’re looking to reduce the amount of food you consume, exercising in the afternoon can reduce your cravings for food in the evening.
  • Many people’s energy levels drop after 6:00 pm meaning they’re a less motivated exercise in the evenings.
  • From a psychological perspective, the time where you will feel you are exerting the lowest amount of energy is in the afternoon meaning you can work out harder and faster.
  • If you are stressed after school work or even college exercise is a great way to relieve this.

Cons of walking in the afternoon

  • Many people simply won’t have the time to exercise in the late afternoon
  • Because of a tight schedule optimizing your workout might prove difficult.

Why you should go for a walk at lunchtime?

Exercising at lunchtime is becoming increasingly popular some love breaking up their workday to include a healthy activity whereas others simply find getting out of work apparel and changing to workout clothes too much hassle.

Pros of going for a walk at lunchtime

  • If your job is sedentary getting your body up and moving for even 20 minutes during your afternoon break is a positive.
  • Exercising at lunchtime is a great way to socialize with your work partners and it helps you get away from your workspace.
  • Going for a walk at lunchtime will increase your body’s blood flow and make you sharper and more productive in the afternoon.
  • Walking at lunchtime is a great way to escape the stress of work.
  • Your body temperature will be higher making it an excellent time to exercise.
  • Many people overeat at lunchtime as they are stressed and bored at work choosing to exercise is a healthier option.

Cons of going for a walk at lunchtime

  • Research indicated that for some people their lung function is worst in the early afternoon.
  • Anyone who has a minor lung problem will struggle to exercise at this time as they are forced to work with 15 to 20% less Long capacity.
  • Having to change into exercise clothes and not having access to a shower may be an issue for many people
  • Some people’s lunchtimes are not scheduled and are unpredictable so getting inadequate exercise may not be possible
  • Some workspaces frown on employees leaving at lunchtime and often don’t give them regular lunch breaks

Why the morning is the best time to go for a walk?

Research has indicated that the morning time is my father the easiest time of the day for people to fit a regular workout in their schedule.

Pros of going for a walk in the morning

  • Getting exercising before your breakfast will dramatically reduce your appetite a study conducted in 2012 found that people who exercise in the morning are far less likely to overeat before they go to work. 
  • Exercising in the morning boosts your metabolism and gives you an energetic feeling throughout the day
  • Pollution levels are the lowest in the morning make it the healthiest time of the day to walk
  • People who make a habit of exercising consistently tend to do so early in the day as it’s easier to form and maintain a habit
  • if you want to maintain your exercise routine throughout the year mornings are the easiest time to do so as it’s the coolest time of the day especially when exercising during the summer
  • There’s less chance of your schedule being interrupted by other distractions
  • It’s easier to just get up a little bit earlier to make time for a walk
  • Your body quickly adapts to your new routine allowing you to train earlier in the morning

Cons of going for walk in the morning

  • Safety may be a problem especially if you’re living in an area or walking in the morning involves doing so before Sunrise. Has Winter sets in and your days are shorter, it’s far more difficult to safely walk in the morning
  • Because your body temperature is low in the morning you may not get the same benefits as exercising later in the day. Your body’s temperature is at its lowest when you just wake up making your blood flow and energy levels naturally lower in the morning. 
  • Because of this stiff muscles and the cold could combine to make you more prone to injury. So, if you’re going to exercise in the morning you must do some adequate warm-up and stretch.
  • Many of us simply aren’t morning people so adapting to an exercise routine that involves going for a walk in the morning is not something to come easily to us.
  • If you haven’t exercised in a while doing so first thing in the morning could result in a late-afternoon energy slump which may not be ideal for some people.
  • If conditions force you to go for a walk on a treadmill rather than outside you may find it difficult to get access to this equipment early in the morning and your local gym.

Final Thoughts

As you see there are pros and cons of going for a walk at every time of the day to be perfectly honest choosing what is the best time to go for a walk will largely come down to personal preference.

It’s a matter of finding time in your already tight schedule and setting aside a block where you can exercise consistently. What I found from my research is most experts agree that the amount of time you spend exercising is far more important than the actual time of the day when you decide to go for a walk.

So if it’s a choice between exercising when you can I’m going for a walk at a very specific time of the day, choose to exercise whenever you can first.

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However, if I was to pick what I think is the best time of the day to go for a walk I’d have to settle on the morning. From a psychological and biological perspective, early morning exercise helps you get the best potential out of your body it also offers you the greatest opportunity to schedule regularly.

Far too many people’s schedules are in the afternoon-evening and even at lunchtime are already packed but you can easily go to bed an hour earlier and get up an hour earlier to create time to allow you to exercise.

As we mentioned previously there’s no such thing as a bad time to go for a walk it’s a matter of prioritizing what works for you whether it’s the evening late afternoon lunchtime or morning if you’re in the headspace to exercise and you have the time to do so just do it.